Posted by Sarah Kinosian on Mar 21, 2012 Leave a comment

Medellin to improve mass transit system

Colombia news - Medellin metro

Medellin plans to make the city’s already impressive mass transit system even more accessible by adding new routes and extending service into the south, reported Radio Caracol Wednesday.

Officials have announced that by the end of April, bus routes linking more than 30 Metro stations with different parts of the city will be introduced and various Metro stations will be built on the way to the town of Sabaneta, 16km south of Medellin.

Medellin opened Colombia’s first metro system in 1995 with an investment of $2 billion, to offer all citizens a low-cost, efficient and convenient way to move around the city and its surrounding areas. In 2005 the city introduced MetroCable, cable cars that travels from the city center up the mountainside into some of Medellin’s most marginalized communities, connecting the city’s poorest residents with more prosperous economic opportunities.

It went one innovative step further last December, opening a series of giant escalators to take residents of another poor and dangerous neighborhood in and out of the city, quickly and safely, for free. The escalator and MetroCable are being studied by cities around the world, some of which have now introduced their own versions.

Medellin’s transport system serves nearly 550 thousand passengers daily and integrates four separate transit lines — Metro de Medellin, the only urban train network in Colombia, Metroplus, the articulated bus network of the Metro de Medellin, Metrocable, and an independent bus network.